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  • Writer's pictureCatharine Riggs

"Foul-Ups and Has-Beens"

Updated: Nov 22, 2023

Hats off to Mick Herron. Love reading about authors who struggled through years of negligible sales but kept writing and hit it big later in their career.


“In 2013, Mick Herron’s rickety literary career looked to be falling apart. None of his novels had sold more than a few hundred copies, and “Slow Horses,” the first book in his acidly funny series about a band of misfits in the British intelligence services, had performed so badly that its sequel, “Dead Lions,” could not find a British publisher. “Ineptitude has always been a big part of my career,” Herron, who will turn 60 in January, said recently. Not anymore. Thanks to a series of fortunate events, and to the irresistible allure of the failures and has-beens who populate his books, Herron has become a literary superstar, with total sales surpassing three million copies.” -The New York Times


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Jim Brown
Jim Brown
22 lis 2023

Interested in fact based espionage and ungentlemanly officers and spies? Try reading Beyond Enkription. It is an enthralling unadulterated fact based spy thriller and a super read as long as you don’t expect John le Carré’s delicate diction, sophisticated syntax and placid plots.


What is interesting is that this book is apparently mandatory reading in some countries’ intelligence agencies' induction programs. Why? Maybe because the book has been heralded by those who should know as “being up there with My Silent War by Kim Philby and No Other Choice by George Blake”. Maybe because Fairclough deviously dissects unusual topics, for example, by using real situations relating to how much agents are kept in the dark by their spy-masters and (surprisingly)…


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